Humans. MkII

dogs life

It occurs to me that when The Committee upstairs made humans they made one small but rather short-sighted mistake. They got rid of the tail. Now, I can see the logic in this, it gets caught in doors, it gets in the way of sitting down and clumsy clods can step on it, but I still think it was a mistake and here’s why.

I looked after a friend’s dog a while back and I never once had wonder if he was happy or sad, it was always obvious from his tail, was it wagging (thankfully usually always) or was it down betwixt his legs. And the thing about dogs and tails is, there’s no hiding emotions, there’s complete honestly all the time, you know if he’s pleased to see you or not, but with humans, well, we’ve become very adept at hiding our true feelings and I’m not sure this is always a good thing. I can see occasions when it is (particularly when dealing with children) but most of the time it’s not. A lot of people hide their true feeling, be it love, hate, irritation, fear, happy or sad and I wonder what kind of world we’d have if we could always tell the emotional state of those around us, if there was always truth in communication, like it was the most natural thing in the world (as it should be), dogs, cats, in fact most animals seem to get along fine with tails..

So I’d like to propose to the The Powers That Be that when we all blow ourselves to bits or a giant meteorite wipes out humans like the dinosaurs, that the next version has a tail and keeps it. Then there will be that honesty in communication; lovers, family, friends, politicians, we’ll be able to see instantly if they’re happy or sad, there won’t be any hiding of feelings. I realise that this will put everyone involved in the duster trade out of business because we’ll all have our own built-in duster but I think that’s a small price to pay for enhanced communication.

octopus

Actually, I’ve been thinking about this a bit more and have decided upon a few more improvements. I really don’t understand why we only have two arms and hands, I’d be much more productive with six or even eight arms …chat on the phone, use two keyboards at same time and scratch my bits all at the same time…and when it comes to rumpy-pumpy..well……….

Plus I’ve decided it would be really useful to have a USB port built in, this would make life simpler for a variety of ways, for starters I’d never lose my tunes, I’d just upload them into my noggin…and then files, documents, photos..all uploaded into my massive brain…but the really important function would be to connect to another person and have that complete connection, being able to communicate feeling and emotions completely without inaccurate words getting in the way…. and the icing on the cake, when I’m knackered I could just plug myself into a wall socket and recharge myself… win-win! You heard it here first God!

Happily Ever After

shrek--fiona,

Dear Children..

Once upon a time in a very strange land called Singledom, there lived an ever so slightly green (and occasionally windy) Ogre called Derek. He wasn’t rich, famous or even particularly clever but he was kind, decent, had a good heart, and really, that’s all that mattered to him.

Before making the long trek to the land called Singledom he lived in a very popular land called Marriagedom where he had many great adventures, escapades, near misses and the occasional pratfall because, if truth be told, he really was quite an adventurous Ogre! By some mysterious magic which he didn’t fully understand, he had somehow managed to grow two baby Ogres (it was a mystery wrapped in an enigma), they turned out to be greener and much smellier than him! (Yes, I know, hard to believe!)

However, now he lived in Singledom and Jolly Gosh!, wasn’t it a spooky place, full of other Ogres, old dragons and some really quite scary monsters, occasionally even he had quite a fright! He’d lived there for more than ten years and yet even after all that time, he still hadn’t figured out the very odd ways there.. (Yes, he really was quite dim..an intellect rivalled only by garden tools)

For starters, he checked out some of the inmates – oops sorry, I mean inhabitants passport photos and he was surprised at how different the photos were from the actual inhabitant. “I’ve put some weight on since that photo was taken” seemed to be a common refrain or “did I not mention my co-joined twin?”. In all fairness, it seems the male inhabitants of that land were very partial to the same behaviour too, one of his Ogre friends went to meet her 6ft ‘athletic build’ Ogre date, it turns out he was 4ft and circular! Cor Blimey! I guess he worked in Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory..

And then there were the natives who didn’t actually live there, they were illegal immigrants! How naughty! Big chief Ogres Donald Trump and Nigel Farage nearly choked on their cornflakes! They earnestly told him that they had full residential status but when he checked they actually lived in his old neighbourhood country Marriagedom and had sneaked into Singledom just to play with the toys! Hiss! Boo!

The other thing the green-ish one found a bit difficult was the language barrier. He spoke English (well, OK, maybe with quite a strong brogue but still recognisably English!) but over there it was a very curious version. For example, he didn’t understand LOL, AFAIK, CU, FWIW or SFLR, he thought – was it Welsh?

Plus the really odd names like BigButts and Glitterfarts, he would never name his little Ogres that, no matter how smelly they got! He found grammar rules seemed very loose, a few of the natives didn’t seem to know the difference between there, they’re and their or your and you’re or to, too and two, and hadn’t a clue what a serial comma was (hint – you just passed one, now wash your hands).

And then there was the idea of an actual date. In the swamp where he was hatched, dating meant meeting up and spending time with the same lovely lady Ogre, at least until they both decided they were flogging a dead horse (or a dead donkey!) (Oh poor donkey!) but in Singledom they used an expression he had never come across before. Apparently one would date lots of Ogres all at the same time and then eventually settle on one by saying “Shall we date exclusively?” Well, he thought, that was very… ummm.. modern..

Singledom was awash with strange customs, some inhabitants appeared happy to write endless messages but when it came to actually meeting up they seemed extremely reluctant. This threw the green one somewhat, in his much younger days this was known as ‘having a Pen Pal’!

And some inhabitants seemed to have extremely poor social skills, they seemed incapable of saying anything more than “Hi”, “Hello” or “HiYa?”. The big green one suspected they just repeated the same message to everyone in Singledom parrot fashion no matter what but that would just be really annoying. Silly Ogre, surely they wouldn’t do that, would they?

Then one day the green-ish one was contacted by a dusky maiden in a land far away called Nigeria. She told him that God had spoken to her in a dream and informed her that she and the Green One were to get married, have lots of little Ogres and relocate to a castle in the land called Scotland. All he needed to do was send her 400 gold coins to buy a magic carpet and she’d be there in a jiffy.

He thought this sounded wonderful and readily agreed but did query as to why God just didn’t make the 400 gold coins appear on her pillow. Confusingly, this angered her greatly, she swore at him and she cursed him, his little Ogres and his pet Hamster.

Snowy hasn’t been the same since!

Another time he was contacted by a Princess from the land called Arabia telling him that he was her dream Ogre! Wow! She was very much younger than him but a lovely shade of green and suitably round absolutely everywhere. He couldn’t understand why she hadn’t been betrothed to some gallant Knight before him but he was really pleased and enormously complimented, she seemed completely genuine!

Then she told him that she had secreted away a huge treasure chest full of gold and silver! Wow! He couldn’t believe his luck! She wanted him to look after it for her and she would share it with him, she just needed his bank account details and she guaranteed he would get a large tax free share of it!! Oh my goodness gracious me! What luck! He wrote back asking what a Bank Account was, he’d never had one of those but then tragedy must have struck because she immediately disappeared right after that. How peculiar..

One day another inmate contacted him from Singledom, she seemed just as genuine as all the other but he feared she had a broken pencil because her message was full of errors;

Hello, Nice meeting you,how are you? Hope you are alright. my name is sally! i have interest in you that makes me leave a massage for you and also I wants you as a friend also want you to write me. i like green skin. tell me were you leave and also send me your pictures; Is my plesure to meet you here in this site. Yours sincerly Miss sally!

Well, at least Miss Sally seemed completely legit.

Oh dear, he wasn’t doing very well so he thought he might try visiting the market town called Waitrose. He’d heard that it was a very big market with lots of very high class and tasty morsels. There was food too! He went there one afternoon with donkey and his wooden shopping cart hoping to fill it up with some beauties but all to no avail. He placed himself by the freezer cabinet and struck his best pose; chest out, bottom in and a puzzled look on his face as he stared at two gherkins in his hand but not one single damsel came along to help him. Oh Bother! (He couldn’t stay there too long, it was very chilly on his willy!)

Then he heard about Cinderella meeting her Prince Charming at the Ball, so off he went to the local Tavern called Stringfellows. He put on his best white(ish) suit and hit the dance floor, who could resist? He was sure he could impress the local maidens with his Kentucky Chicken, his Gangnam Style Funky Chicken, his Mashed Potato and then his Hokey Cokey (cos that’s what it’s all about!). Sadly the maidens in Stringfellows were immune to his charms (and his Harlem Hustle) and he was asked to leave with an Achy Breaky Heart after being too enthusiastic with The Bump.

Poor Ogre, he was getting a bit bored with all the shenanigans of Singledom and wondered if a life as a Trappist Monk awaited him. (or a life tending his swamp with his over-talkative Donkey) he wasn’t sure which fate was worse. . He had travelled the length and breadth of Singledom, from the icy north beyond the Great Wall of Hadrian (protecting the island from the fearsome white walkers) to the very southern lands of ancient Cornish (who made the most delicious ice cream!) but all to no avail..

BUT THEN.. something happened. Completely randomly, after many many false starts he finally met a fair maiden called Fiona, another long suffering inhabitant of Singledom. She had just as many tales to share with him, all of them sounding very familiar..

She had smarts, was strong, feisty and could out-stink even him! They spent a lot of time chatting, laughing, arm wrestling, mud bathing and cutting the cheese. It seemed too good to be true!
And then one evening he treated her with kindness, love, respect, tenderness, burned weevils and a lovely bunch of weeds when something magical happened, she rolled onto her back and was transformed into a purring pussycat!

Holy Smoke!

This was somewhat inconvenient, he was completely allergic to cats, so he swore to himself never to do that again!

However, they both went to consult with the Witch of Superdrug. She told them she couldn’t break the spell; treat Fiona lovely and she would be transformed…. but she could adjust the spell slightly so instead of transforming into a cat she would be transformed into a DOG! And not one of those silly poodle dogs but a proper man sized dog, one that came up to his knees!

This was the best of both worlds; feisty fighty funny flirty frisky and furry all rolled up into one, she was the ideal companion! His friends joked about her being a bit of a dog but he didn’t mind, she was fun to be with and he loved her very very much!

(Plus they were doing a special on doggie treats in the market of Waitrose, hurrah hurrah!)

And they lived in Happily Ever After

The Irish Shrek

37 Rules For Life.

assholes

1. Never, under any circumstances, take a sleeping pill and a laxative on the same night.
2. Don’t worry about what people think, they don’t do it very often.
3. Going to church doesn’t make you a Christian anymore than standing in a garage makes you a car.
4. Artificial intelligence is no match for natural stupidity.
5. If you must choose between two evils, pick the one you’ve never tried before.
6. My idea of housework is to sweep the room with a glance.
7. Not one shred of evidence supports the notion that life is serious.
8. A person, who is nice to you, but rude to the waiter, is not a nice person. (This is very important. Pay attention! It never fails.)
9. For every action, there is an equal and opposite government program.
10. If you look like your passport picture, you probably need the trip.
11. Bills travel through the mail at twice the speed of checks.
12. A conscience is what hurts when all of your other parts feel so good.
13. Eat well, stay fit, die anyway.
14. Men are from earth. Women are from earth. Deal with it.
15. No man has ever been shot while doing the dishes.
16. A balanced diet is a cookie in each hand.
17. Middle age is when broadness of the mind and narrowness of the waist change places.
18. Opportunities always look bigger going than coming.
19. Junk is something you’ve kept for years and throw away three weeks before you need it.
20. There is always one more imbecile than you counted on.
21. Experience is a wonderful thing. It enables you to recognize a mistake when you make it again.
22. By the time you can make ends meet, they move the ends.
23. Thou shalt not weigh more than thy refrigerator.
24. Someone who thinks logically provides a nice contrast to the real world.
25. It ain’t the jeans that make your butt look fat.
26. If you had to identify, in 1 word, the reason why the human race has not achieved, & never will achieve, its full potential, that word would be “meetings.”
27. There is a very fine line between “hobby” and “mental illness.”
28. People who want to share their religious views with you almost never want you to share yours with them.
29. You should not confuse your career with your life.
30. Nobody cares if you can’t dance well. Just get up and dance.
31. Never lick a steak knife.
32. The most destructive force in the universe is gossip.
33. You will never find anybody who can give you a clear and compelling reason why we observe daylight savings time.
34. You should never say anything to a woman that even remotely suggests that you think she’s pregnant unless you can see an actual baby emerging from her at that moment.
35. There comes a time when you should stop expecting other people to make a big deal about your birthday. That time is age eleven.
36. The one thing that unites all human beings, regardless of age, gender, religion, economic status or ethnic background, is that, deep down inside, we ALL believe that we are above average drivers.
37. Your friends love you anyway.

Darwinism Disproven

photo

I think it’s time for me to collect yet another Nobel Prize as I have come up with final proof that Darwinism – whilst a lovely logical notion – is complete bollocks. I’ve been thinking about this for a while and I’ve come to realise that natural selection has a very obvious fatal flaw – or maybe that should be paw..

You see, according to natural selection the male of the species should get more colourful with each passing generation to attract the female of the species and pass on his genetic code. If one looks at the peacock then this would seem the obvious answer, the hen is plain but the male has developed this amazing fan tail of feathers and this is repeated across the bird kingdom, the only exception is the eclectus parrot where the female is multi-coloured but the male is plain green.

So, that seems simple and straight forward enough. But there’s a problem with that theory. You see, if that was the case then most human males would look remarkably more like little furry puppies with each passing generation.

Perhaps I should explain. I’ve doggie-sat occasional for friends and taken dogs for nice long walks in the park and without exception the female of our species will always come over and talk to the doggie and even stroke it’s tum if given half a chance. They pretty much ignore me but the mutt get’s them coo-ing endlessly. Ironically, puppies are like female cat-nip.a502e7d5-ecb5-483e-98c5-da4a81861b45

So, according to natural selection men should be by now at least a little bit furry, have big shiny eyes, floppy ears, a wet nose and pant a lot. Now I know that some men are heading that way, I pant a lot when I see an attractive woman and the urge to hump her leg doggie style is almost overwhelming but I resist the urge. One of my friends is indeed very hairy – his wife says it’s like sleeping with a Werewolf, but generally looking around at the male of the species I think it’s never going to happen, I seriously doubt that a million generations down the line that we’re all going to look like Scooby Do.

I wonder when I can collect my Nobel Prize?

It’s more than just a car..

amadog

An unlucky lady drove into my parked car last week, mine and the car behind it. She was distracted, lost control and bashed into my car and then the car behind me at some speed. Fortunately she was totally unharmed, just shocked but all three cars were totally wrecks.The insurance man came, took one look at my wreck and said it was uneconomical to repair, it would be scrapped.

Now, here’s the thing. I’ve had that car for a few years now and it’s never let me down, it always started first time, everything works as it should (or did!) and I’ve travelled all over the country in it. It’s the most reliable car I’ve ever had. And now it’s going to be scrapped.

We men shouldn’t get attached to lumps of metal but here’s what it feels like. It feels like I’ve had a faithful dog, one that I’ve had for many a year, it’s been totally faithful, it’s never bit me, it’s never even peed on the carpet. It’s never refused to go for a walk and has been 100% obedient and loyal.

And then last Saturday morning it was sitting outside, completely minding it’s own business and a stranger came along and carelessly stepped on it’s paw and broke it. Completely at random, wrong place, wrong time. And then the vet has come along and said “Nope, I’m afraid I have to put him to sleep..”. And I protest but the vet says “it’s OK, you can get another one exactly like that..” but that just feels wrong, this dog never bite me, was innocently minding it’s own business and completely faultless but still it has to be put down. I looked at the car and it looked back with it’s big doleful eyes that said “what happened, I don’t understand???”

I feel bad for him. I’m not sure if cars have souls but if mine does then I hope he’s racing around some race track in heaven enjoying himself and having a ball. He was my best car ever.

USA v UK

america

I found this on the interweb the other day;

I was in England again a few weeks ago, mostly in small towns, but here’s some of what I noticed:
* Almost everyone is very polite
* The food is generally outstanding
* There are no guns
* There are too many narrow stairs
* Everything is just a little bit different
* The pubs close too early
* The reason they drive on the left is because all their cars are built backwards
* Pubs are not bars, they are community living rooms.
* You’d better like peas, potatoes and sausage
* Refrigerators and washing machines are very small
* Everything is generally older, smaller and shorter
* People don’t seem to be afraid of their neighbors or the government
* Their paper money makes sense, the coins don’t
* Everyone has a washing machine but driers are rare
* Hot and cold water faucets. Remember them?
* Pants are called “trousers”, underwear are “pants” and sweaters are “jumpers”
* The bathroom light is a string hanging from the ceiling
* “Fanny” is a naughty word, as is “shag”
* All the signs are well designed with beautiful typography and written in full sentences with proper grammar.
* There’s no dress code
* Doors close by themselves, but they don’t always open
* They eat with their forks upside down
* The English are as crazy about their gardens as Americans are about cars
* They don’t seem to use facecloths or napkins or maybe they’re just less messy than we are
* The wall outlets all have switches, some don’t do anything
* There are hardly any cops or police cars
* 5,000 year ago, someone arranged a lot of rocks all over, but no one is sure why
* When you do see police they seem to be in male & female pairs and often smiling
* Black people are just people: they didn’t quite do slavery here
* Everything comes with chips, which are French Fries. You put vinegar on them
* Cookies are “biscuits” and potato chips are “crisps”
* HP sauce is better then catsup
* Obama is considered a hero, Bush is considered an idiot.
* After fish and chips, curry is the most popular food
* The water controls in showers need detailed instructions
* They will boil anything
* Folks don’t always lock their bikes
* It’s not unusual to see people dressed different and speaking different languages
* Your electronic devices will work fine with just a plug adapter
* Nearly everyone is better educated then we are
* If someone buys you a drink you must do the same
* There are no guns
* Look right, walk left. Again; look right, walk left. You’re welcome.
* Avoid British wine and French beer
* It’s not that hard to eat with the fork in your left hand with a little practice. If you don’t, everyone knows you’re an American
* Many of the roads are the size of our sidewalks
* There’s no AC
* Instead of turning the heat up, you put on a jumper
* Gas is “petrol”, it costs about $6 a gallon and is sold by the liter
* If you speed on a motorway, you get a ticket. Period. Always
* You don’t have to tip, really!
* Scotland, Wales, Ireland and Cornwall really are different countries
* Only 14% of Americans have a passport, almost everyone in the UK does
* You pay the price marked on products because the taxes (VAT) are built in
* Walking is the national pastime
* Their TV looks and sounds much better then ours
* They took the street signs down during WWII, but haven’t put them all back up yet
* Everyone enjoys a good joke
* There are no guns
* Dogs are very well behaved and welcome everywhere
* There are no window screens
* You can get on a bus and end up in Paris
* Everyone knows more about our history then we do
* Radio is still a big deal. The BBC is quite good
* The newspapers can be awful
* Everything costs the same but our money is worth less so you have to add 50% to the price to figure what you’re paying
* Beer comes in large, completely filled, actual pint glasses and the closer the brewery the better the beer
* Butter and eggs aren’t refrigerated
* The beer isn’t warm, each style is served at the proper temperature
* Cider (alcoholic) is quite good.
* Excess cider consumption can be very painful.
* The universal greeting is “Cheers” (pronounced “cheeahz” unless you are from Cornwall, in which case it’s “chairz”)
* The money is easy to understand: 1-2-5-10-20-50 pence, £1-£2 coins and £5-£10, etc bills. There are no quarters.
* Their cash makes ours look like Monopoly money
* Cars don’t have bumper stickers
* Many doorknobs, buildings and tools are older than America
* By law, there are no crappy, old cars
* When the sign says something was built in 456, they didn’t lose the “1”
* Cake is is pudding, ice cream is pudding, anything served for desert is pudding, even pudding
* BBC 4 is NPR
* Everything closes by 1800 (6pm)
* Very few people smoke, those who do often roll their own
* You’re defined by your accent
* No one in Cornwall knows what the hell a Cornish Game Hen is
* Football is a religion, religion is a sport
* Europeans dress better then the British, we dress worse
* The trains work: a three minute delay is regrettable
* Drinks don’t come with ice
* There are far fewer fat English people
* There are a lot of healthy old folks around participating in life instead of hiding at home watching tv
* If you’re over 60, you get free tv and bus and rail passes.
* They don’t use Bose anything anywhere
* Displaying your political or religious affiliation is considered very bad taste
* Every pub seems to have a pet drunk
* Their healthcare works, but they still bitch about it
* Cake is one of the major food groups
* Their coffee is mediocre but the tea is wonderful
* There are still no guns
* Towel warmers!
* Cheers

And then I found the response;

england-en

Scott Waters, an American, has caused a stir with a Facebook post sharing his observations from a recent trip to smalltown England. “People don’t seem to be afraid of their neighbours or the government” and “There are no guns” were two of his comments that seemed to help the post go viral. And pretty astute, I thought, was: “Pubs are not bars, they are community living rooms.”

I moved from the UK to the US six months ago, and it’s true what they say: the portions are enormous; there really are 300-400 TV channels; everyone has beautifully white teeth; and nobody can pronounce “water”.

But, at the risk of biting the hand that feeds me, here are a few other things I’ve noticed about the United States. Because, as John Travolta once said, they’ve got everything we’ve got … it’s just the little differences.

1. Customer service is either so warm it’s like you’ve made a new friend for life or so brusque you feel as though you’ve just been ordered back into your cell after your five-minute phone call with your lawyer. There’s no middle ground.

2. You need to tip for everything. If you think maybe you should tip, you should tip. You should be tipping me for this article.

3. If you don’t tip in a restaurant, the waiter or waitress will make a smart remark and your evening will be ruined. I’ve seen it happen.

4. People tip because the waiting staff are paid low hourly rates.

5. The waiting staff are paid low hourly rates because employers have successfully tricked their customers into taking on a significant portion of their staffing costs. If you don’t like the sound of that, all is not quite lost – there is a socialist running for president this time.

6. You can have anything you want, as long as you can pay for it.

7. And as long as you tip.

8. You can fill up your car at a petrol station using a couple of nickels and an old button.

9. Something as tiny and insignificant as a bicycle could never be considered remotely comparable to a car, and to expect it to abide by the same rules of the road is considered utterly absurd by cyclists, pedestrians and drivers alike.

10. Coins have become so worthless that restaurants sometimes refuse to take them – even thieves have been known to turn their noses up at some of them.

11. They’re only really used for the laundromat. Because strangely enough in this land of modern conveniences, it’s apparently too much to ask to want a washing machine in your apartment.

12. Nobody is worried about burglars even though they have fire escape stairs stuck to the outside of their building and the living-room window has been propped open for six months because an air-conditioning unit is sticking out of it. And, no, a flyscreen won’t keep them out.

13. Although I admit it: a flyscreen is a good idea. I haven’t had to kill a wasp or a moth for months.

14. Apartments usually come unfurnished, and Americans think the idea of sitting on someone else’s sofa or sleeping in someone else’s bed is disgusting. Come on – they’re not in there with you. “They might as well be!”

15. Far more Americans than the often-quoted 14% have a passport. But even if the number is low, relative to other countries, the fact is that they can quite happily cover 3.8m sq miles of vastly varied terrain without one. That’s more than double the 1.7m sq miles of the EU , which many British holidaymakers will be visiting.

16. It’s best to think of the police as a sort of occupying army and avoid them accordingly – particularly if you are not white.

17. TV news is rabidly partisan, while the broadsheet press pretends to be objective and neutral. Whereas in Britain …

18. Remember when British leftwingers thought Boris Johnson was too much of a joke to become mayor of London and then he went and did it anyway? That’s what’s happening with Donald Trump and the presidency.

19. That story about the pig was probably the first time anyone here had heard of David Cameron.

20. Celebrities walk around major cities as bold as brass. The other day I sat next to Dominic West, Damian Lewis and John Slattery in a restaurant.

21. Yeah, that’s right. And bragging is considered perfectly OK.

22. And so is telling someone sincerely that you think they, or something they have done, is amazing and fantastic.

23. I mean it.

24. No, really.

25. I’m not being sarcastic.

26. Honestly. That’s just my normal voice.

27. A lot of the trains and subway carriages look like whoever built them said, “OK, well, it works – what more do you want?” And left it at that.

28. But basically, you’re lucky in most parts of the country if you have any trains or subway systems at all.

29. If you get out of your car and walk from A to B in Los Angeles or Miami, people will think you are a surprisingly well-dressed and purposeful-looking homeless person.

30. If you’ve got good health insurance, the doctor will give you everything you need … and more.

31. If you haven’t … Oh, God. Good luck to you.

32. A lot of people consider “Oh, God” swearing.

33. Medical companies believe you will respond positively to a TV advert for, say, a sleeping pill that includes 10 minutes of warnings about side-effects that include danger of death, erections lasting more than 24 hours, and the fact that you may find yourself driving a car while asleep and not remember it the next day.

34. If you do need a sleeping pill the slow, ponderous and worthy tones of NPR (National Public Radio) may fit the bill. Do not listen while driving or operating heavy machinery. Or if you have an erection that has lasted more than 24 hours.

35. Americans love telling stories, and they’re really good at it.

36. And they’re really creative with language, especially slang.

37. If you watch European football (soccer) here, it’s a morning sport, after which you can do other things with the rest of your day. As long as you haven’t kept to your old British football-and-drinking regime.

38. It’s perfectly respectable to drink Coca-Cola or other similar drinks with a meal.

39. Order a cup of tea in a cafe or restaurant and you will be confronted with a glass or mug of lukewarm water with a teabag of some alarming flavour, like pomegranate or boysenberry, floating sadly on the top like a punctured dinghy, and some “milk” that is probably 50% cream, delivered on request. I’m just going to say it once: the water needs to be at boiling point for the tea to infuse!!!

40. Just order a cup of coffee. They know what they’re doing with coffee.

41. If you eat pizza with a knife and fork they look at you like you just ate a sandwich with a spoon. New York’s mayor, Bill de Blasio, caused major controversy by eating his the European way – the weakling.

42. A plate of Doritos and some guacamole is considered a full meal.

43. Bars don’t usually serve food. Just keep on drinking.

44. But drinking on the street is illegal – except in New Orleans, where it’s compulsory.

45. People still love smoking, and the glowing retro-futurist coloured lights of e-cigarettes haven’t really caught on yet.

46. They have no universally agreed upon way of saying goodbye (a kiss on the cheek would be unforgivably inappropriate and borderline actionable). Most common is just to pause for a moment, perhaps give a barely perceptible nod or slightly awkward wave … and then simply walk away.

47. The weather really means business.

48. Americans are acutely conscious of race, in the way British people are acutely conscious of class.

49. Lots of people you don’t expect to own guns or support the right to bear arms do .

50. No massacre, no matter how awful, will prompt Congress to tighten America’s gun laws. There will have to be a wider cultural shift. Lots of people do care about this. But they’re not sure exactly what to do.

Nobel Prize #3

Extra body anyone?
Extra body anyone?

It looks like I’m up for my third Nobel Prize for Science; I don’t know WHY I didn’t figure this out sooner!

Ladies, do you use shampoo in the shower? Well when I wash my hair, the shampoo runs down my whole body, and printed very clearly on the shampoo label is this warning,

“FOR EXTRA VOLUME AND BODY.”

…No wonder I’ve been gaining weight!

Facepalm!

Well! I have gotten rid of that shampoo and I am going to start showering with Jif scouring cream instead, its label reads,

“DISSOLVES FAT THAT IS OTHERWISE DIFFICULT TO REMOVE.”

There, problem solved. You can thank me now. I wonder when I will get my Nobel Prize?

Doris McKee

dscf0100

My mother Doris passed away suddenly last week so I thought I’d pen a few thoughts. The over-riding thing I remember about Doris is her determination to do things her own way and sod the rules. The Doris I knew was completely unflappable, she played by her own rules whilst on this earth, she never worried much about what others thought of her.

The rules are that when you’re in your 80’s you should be settling down for a quieter life but not Doris (and Bob!), off they went to Australia to a wedding and of course there was a freak heatwave there and even the natives were falling to the ground with the heat but not Doris and Bob.

She spent a few weeks travelling around in the sweltering heat and then came back to a bitterly cold Ballymoney winter with frozen pipes burst in the home and the place a mess. I talked to her at the time and asked her if she was all right and she said ‘oh aye, sure, I’ve got Bob, that’s all that matters’ and it’s true, she had Bob by her side and that was the most important thing in her life.

Having a medical background I flew over here last week to make sure that she got through her operation and past the danger-zone of the weekend however instead of finding Doris comatosed in Intensive Care I found her sitting out watching X Factor on Saturday evening. This was 24 hrs after a major op.

She was bright and sparkly and completely on the ball.

The rules are that when you’re on ITU you’re meant to be really sick but as usual Doris played by her own rules. The rules also state that when you’re 88 and just past a major operation you’re meant to be a bit fuzzy – but not Doris, she was able to tell me my mobile number quick as a flash on Saturday evening – something even I have difficulty remembering..

On Thursday evening, the night before her op I had a quick chat in private with her, I told her that she wasn’t allowed to die, that it didn’t fit in with my timetable, that it wouldn’t be very convenient – I told her that perhaps…. PERHAPS when I’m 65 and retired and she’s 100 then PERHAPS it would be OK then…

She roared with laughter and said that she’ll go when the man upstairs says it time and that’s the end of it!

Our last chat was an interesting one, we were talking about church and religion and she was trying to get me to go to church (as usual), lots of talk about Jesus, God and heaven and I remember holding her hand and telling her that I tried to be good not because I wanted to get into heaven and not because I didn’t want to go to hell but because it’s the right thing to do, our motivation shouldn’t be the next world but trying to do our best for this world.. She looked at me and I knew she was OK with that and the subject wouldn’t come up again.

For 32,120 days Doris walked, strode, ran, swam, leaped, crawled and sometimes stumbled on this Earth. Not all of them days were good, some very hard, some were bad, some were a real struggle but in all the time I knew Doris I never saw her without a smile on her face.

And she told me that the last 2,258 days were the best because those where the days that she had been married to Bob.

Men brains verses women’s brains

emptybox

Men’s brains and women’s brains are very different from each other.

First, I want to start with men’s brains. Men’s brains are very unique. Men’s brains are made up of little boxes. Most women don’t realize that we have a box for everything. We’ve got a box for the car. We’ve got a box for the money. We’ve got a box for the job. We’ve got a box for you. We’ve got a box for the kids. We’ve got a box for your mother somewhere in the basement.

We’ve got boxes everywhere. And the rule is: the boxes don’t touch. When a man discusses a particular subject, we go to that particular box, we pull that box out, we open the box, and we discuss only what is in THAT BOX. And then we close the box and put it away being very, very careful not to touch other boxes.

Now women’s brains are very, very different from men’s brains. Women’s brains are made up of a big ball of wire. And everything is connected to everything. The money is connected to the car and the car is connected to your job and your kids are connected to your mother and everything-is-all-connected. It’s like the internet superhighway, and it’s all driven by energy that we call emotion. It’s one of the reasons why women tend to remember…everything.

Because if you take an event and you connect it to an emotion it burns in your memory and you can remember it forever. The same thing happens for men. It just doesn’t happen very often, because quite frankly…we don’t care. Women tend to care about everything. And she just loves it.

Now men, we have a box in our brain that most women are not aware of. This particular box has nothing in it. In fact, we call it the #nothing box.’ And of all the boxes a man has in his brain, the #nothing box’ is our favorite box. If a man has a chance, he’ll go to his nothing box every time. That’s why a man can do something seemingly completely brain dead for hours on end. You know, like fishing.

Now they’ve actually measured this. The University of Pennsylvania a couple of years ago did a study and discovered that men have the ability to think about absolutely nothing, and still breathe.

Women can’t do it. Their mind has never stopped. And they don’t understand the #nothing box’, and it drives them CRAZY because nothing drives a woman more crazy and makes them feel more irritated than to watch a man. Doing. Nothing.